2006 Pontiac Vibe

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$16,430

starting MSRP

Key specs

Base trim shown

Hatchback

Body style

5

Seating capacity

171.9” x 62.2”

Dimensions

Front-wheel drive

Drivetrain

Overview

The good:

  • Performance of GT
  • Kinship to Toyota Matrix
  • Optional side-curtain airbags
  • Available StabiliTrak stability system

The bad:

  • Instrument layout
  • Engine noise

2 trims

Starting msrp listed lowest to highest price

Wondering which trim is right for you?

Our 2006 Pontiac Vibe trim comparison will help you decide.

See also: Find the best Hatchbacks for 2024

Notable features

  • Sport wagon body style
  • Manual or automatic
  • Youthful orientation
  • Available AWD

2006 Pontiac Vibe review: Our expert's take

Vehicle Overview
Pontiac launched its entry-level Vibe hatchback wagon as an early 2003 model. Styled by Pontiac and engineered by Toyota, the Vibe is produced at a Toyota/General Motors joint-venture facility in Fremont, Calif. Pontiac’s Vibe is related to the Toyota Matrix.

Like other small crossover models, the Vibe combines some features of a sports car, a sport wagon and a sport utility vehicle. That sounds like a lot of sportiness, and the Vibe leans in that direction because Pontiac has long been positioned as the sportiest member of the GM divisions.

For 2006, a stereo system with MP3 playback capability and a Sport Package that includes a premium monotone appearance group are available. Security and Premium Packages also are offered. A Sun and Sound Package, which includes a sunroof and Monsoon sound system, replaces last year’s Moon and Tunes Value Package.

Designed to target youthful buyers, the Vibe comes with front- or all-wheel drive. A tire-pressure-monitoring system is standard on GT and all-wheel-drive models, and GM’s StabiliTrak electronic stability system is available. GM’s OnStar communication system is optional.

Exterior
Exhibiting a sleek wedge profile and short overhangs, the Vibe displays basic styling cues that suggest an SUV. A slight resemblance to the company’s controversial and now-defunct Aztek may be noted, but the Vibe is considerably less radical.

Tapering side window lines are reminiscent of the Ford Focus Wagon. The distinctive roofline has an integrated roof rack. Bold features include a vented front fascia with a twin-port grille and recessed fog lamps.

The Vibe measures 171.9 inches long, stands 62.2 inches tall and has a 102.4-inch wheelbase. Standard wheels measure 16 inches in diameter, but 17-inch wheels are available. All-wheel-drive Vibes have an independent rear suspension.

Interior
The Vibe can seat five occupants; it was developed to yield a spacious interior within a compact frame. Both the front passenger seat and the 60/40-split rear seat fold flat, creating a level load floor for cargo up to 8 feet long. When the backseat is folded down, cargo space behind the front row totals 54.1 cubic feet. Leather seating surfaces are optional.

Chrome-trimmed gauges in the driver-oriented cockpit feature the traditional red Pontiac backlighting. Chrome tie-downs are installed, and a CD player is standard. An in-dash six-CD changer and XM Satellite Radio are optional.

Under the Hood
The base 126-horsepower, 1.8-liter four-cylinder teams with a standard five-speed-manual transmission or an optional four-speed automatic. With all-wheel drive, that engine produces 118 hp and works only with the automatic. The Vibe GT holds a 164-hp, 1.8-liter four-cylinder that teams only with a six-speed-manual gearbox. Premium fuel is recommended for the GT. For extra performance, a dealer-installed supercharger has been available for the base model.

Safety
Antilock brakes are standard on all-wheel-drive and GT models and optional on the base front-drive Vibe. The Vibe GT gets all-disc brakes, while other models use a front-disc/rear-drum setup. Seat-mounted side-impact airbags and side curtain-type airbags are optional.

Consumer reviews

Rating breakdown (out of 5):
  • Comfort 4.2
  • Interior 4.3
  • Performance 4.2
  • Value 4.7
  • Exterior 4.4
  • Reliability 4.8

Most recent consumer reviews

5.0

Best, most trouble free vehicle I’ve ever owned

Bought a 2006 Pontiac Vibe fwd, automatic new. It has ~ 350,000 miles on it (speedometer will only register 299999 miles). We keep up with the miles using the trip odometer. Have maintained consistent and regular 3,000 mile interval oil changes. Engine uses NO OIL (Valvoline 5w30) and tranny has given no problems. Replaced valve cover gasket & O2 sensor at ~ 330,000 miles; struts @ ~ 340,000 miles (yes, they were overdue!). Needs catalytic converter. Nose of hood is a rock magnet (the car has never been wrecked or had any body repairs or paint). Paint is beginning to show its age (I hate base coat/clear coat; give me acrylic enamel any day). Headlight lense covers are weathering (originals). Have replaced fog lights a couple of times (road debris takes them out). All accessories - power windows, door locks, AC, electronics, lights - work. It is still our daily driver plus it does double duty as our towed vehicle behind our motorhome. As such, I’ve taken it places in the mountains on steep (and I mean STEEP), narrow loose rock roads (most recently in Big Bend National Park and surrounding areas). To sum it up, if they were still made, I’d buy a new one today. One solid, reliable car. If I could improve it, I would add more ground clearance and selective four wheel drive with a conventional transfer case so I could flat tow it behind my motorhome. (As for use, we use it for “commuting, transporting family, and having fun”; can’t pick just one).

5.0

A Car That Keeps You Safe

I was in a wreck and had I not been in this absolute tank of a car, I would not be here today. I love this car with all of my heart; I have a 2006 Pontiac Vibe and despite the wreck, it runs like a dream. It has over 200k miles on it and I drive it up a mountain nearly daily. It is my first car and I have never had any problems with it.

5.0

Most reliable car on the planet

Stealthy Toyota Matrix. This car has Toyota Matrix/Corolla guts. The 1.8 VVT motor is good for 300K miles. The 4 speed automatic is really a 5 speed. Top overdrive gear has a direct drive locking feature that kicks in on flat terrain. Mine has AWD and I have gotten 36 MPG on long easy trips. I seldom get less than 30MPG on a tankful. Front seats are comfy. Rear seats will fit 3 average adults. Sporty handling, good brakes, good visibility, solid and reliable. My one and only complaint is it’s a bit noisy.

See all 48 consumer reviews

Safety

Based on the 2006 Pontiac Vibe base trim.
Frontal driver
5
Frontal passenger
4
Nhtsa rollover rating
4
Side driver
3
Side rear passenger
4

Warranty

New car program benefits
Bumper-to-bumper
36 months/36,000 miles
Corrosion
72 months/100,000 miles
Roadside assistance
36 months/36,000 miles

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